Friday, July 27, 2012

Welcome Cats, Quilts, and Museums (La Conner, WA)

I visited La Conner Quilt and Textile Museum yesterday.  The Tudor-style Victorian mansion was fabulous to see by itself, but the old quilts on display along with the Japanese quilt exhibit made the visit perfect!

This mansion was built in 1891 and was known as the Gaches Castle.
The mansion almost did not make it after being gutted and turned into apartments for 30 years.  One of the tenants caused a major fire that took out the roof and third floor.  

There was talk of tearing down the old place, but one man saw a historic site that needed to be saved and started a restoration group.

They did a wonderful job restoring this mansion.
I just love the colors in this quilt!
They even restored the old fireplaces with Italian tile just as Mrs. Gaches would have liked it.
There are two exhibits at the museum from Japan right now.  One is "Ainu Embroidery" and the other is "At Play - Asobi: Quilts from Japan".  The Ainu Embroidery also included reverse appliqué.  I spent a lot of time studying the artwork.  I think I'm going to give reverse appliqué a try sometime soon. The embroidery consisted of "Cord" stitching or what I call couching. The coat in the photo below is all reverse appliqué and cord embroidery.

The quilts were extraordinary and made from silk, loose woven cotton, and hemp.  One quilt had me and another woman with our noses only inches from its work.  The quilt was filled with small scenes of the old life in Japan.  Beautiful gardens, detailed robes, hair, and their faces were just amazing.  I could have spent more time looking and studying all the quilts, but the museum was very busy that day.
No photos allowed, so here's some samples from a post card.
Back to the real world again.....across the street from the museum was a small butterfly garden for the public.  A very serene spot to relax and smell the flowers.

On The Cutting Board
Remember the cat material I bought a while ago?  Well, I decided to make a Welcome wall-hanging.  I used an old photo of Dusty playing on the scratch post as my kitty model.

I want to use large letters so people can see them at a distance.  I'm still working on the size and style I want to use.
 In the meantime, I am making a border using a paper foundation since the border's pattern is very small and there are a lot of pieces.

Happy Quilting!


  1. What an amazing building! I'll have to add that to my list. Wow...I feel like I've been living under a rock...catching up with all of the wonderful places you have visited. :)

  2. I can't believe they were able to turn it into apartments. That'd be so awesome to live in a place like that! But looks like restorations went well ad that's great it's open to the public!

    1. I use to dream of restoring an old house or mansion like this one. It would have been pretty neat to live in such a place.

  3. Great building, flowers and fabric. You welcome banner will be sooooooooooo cute when finished. I would have loved to see the quilts in the mansion. Have a great weekend.


Thanks for taking time to leave me a comment. I enjoy hearing from you.

"Friendship is a blessing, It's the best you have to share, The talents and the wisdom, The capacity to care." ~ Emily Matthews

Popular Posts